Never having taken a computer course in my life, I am picking up oddball tips and tricks every day. Many are thanks to kindly folks I’ve come to know online.

Others, like the one I found yesterday, have simply been dumb luck. Regardless of the learning process, these lessons are invaluable as I gradually switch from scribbling in notebooks to taking raw ideas straight to the keyboard.

I’ll warn you computer savvy folks that this procedure is probably nothing special. You might laugh and shake your head. I’ve decided that whether my simplicity gives you a chuckle or this message saves you bundles of frustration, it’s worth taking time to share.

My new discovery occurred when I plugged in my thumb drive to retrieve the latest version of a story. Instead of just thoughtlessly overwriting the file, I used “Save as” and selected the file from that morning. What a surprise to find additional options in the MS Word dialog box! I’m sure they’ve always been there and I never noticed. It happens with me.

This time, I noticed. I chose “Merge changes into existing file” out of curiosity and was delighted to find all the changed text in blue. Things I had deleted were crossed out while added words showed up with underlining. Simple, yet magic to my wondering eyes.

Right click on the blue text to either accept or decline the proscribed change! Why did it take me so long to find this? It’s easy!

Now go write, and be sure to save your documents as you go!

5 thoughts on “Wiley Wednesday for the Technically Impaired

  1. Awesome!! I'm glad you like that feature. I actually hate it, it's called "Track Changes," but for those for whom it works, it's the bee's knees. I'm tickled pink that you find it useful!!!!

  2. Dilo says:

    Thanks, Darla. Even though I know about it, I still learn something from knowing how others experience anything on the computer. I have a love-hate relationship with change tracking. I need it, but it can drive me crazy. Sometimes a little thing can make it decide the whole document is a change, rendering it useless. On the positive side, a lot of people return edited documents to me without changing the file name, so it's a breeze to do a quick comparison to confirm the version.

  3. I appreciate the input, dears! The idea of the entire document being rendered useless is eye opening. I'll think before I use it again!

  4. I've never heard of that, may have to give it look at some point, and see what it's like.

  5. Lucius, I'm so pleased if this is useful to you! It seemed likely I was alone in not knowing about this. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *